New energy policies in Colorado are resulting in less water needed for the energy generation sector.

New energy policies in Colorado are resulting in less water needed for the energy generation sector. In 2011, coal- and natural-gas-fired power plants in the State of Colorado consumed approximately 64,000 acre-feet (AF) of water. With state policies promoting energy efficiency and renewable energy, and retiring the state’s most carbon- and waterintensive power plants, Colorado’s energy sector likely will use even less water in the future. The trend in energy-related water use is an important consideration in evaluating Colorado’s future water demands, particularly for creating a new State Water Plan. Furthermore, new policies to promote water-efficient forms of energy generation can lead to additional future water savings, reducing the “gap” between future water demands and supplies in Colorado.